Meet Our Team: Ashley
Meet Our Team: Ashley
Ashely has been an excellent addition to our team! She's served our company, customers, and new customers with enthusiasm, opening doors of communication and providing sound advice.
When and how did you begin working for Douglas Equipment?
I joined the Douglas Equipment team in March 2021. After moving back to my home state of West Virginia, I began looking for a work environment that was a challenge and very different from my past endeavors. It was important to find a company that was both supportive and could match my energy.
How would you describe your job and work responsibilities?
Within the Douglas umbrella of departments, I’ve been lucky enough to work in our Outbound Department. Here we work on developing new relationships with businesses, higher education/K-12 facilities, event venues, and cooperatives all across the United States. Our goal is to spread knowledge about our company and how we can be a resource when equipment needs arise.
We work closely with Project Managers on bids ensuring that all the small details are communicated to make the quoting process a seamless one between Douglas and the customer. Meeting with manufacturing representatives keeps me in the loop with new products and how to best inform the customer of their equipment options.
The Outbound Department is also the face of Douglas Equipment at school nutrition shows.
Do you have a favorite memory of your time with us you'd like to share?
My favorite times are when we plan our potlucks. I love getting together with my co-workers and being able to enjoy each other’s company.
What experiences do you think helped prepare you for your current role?
In previous roles, communication was always at the forefront of the positions. For years I’ve spoken with and worked closely with people that I was just meeting. These experiences have made me feel very comfortable in asking questions and developing relationships with my customers. I think it’s great to not only talk to customers about equipment but even about gardening.
What advice would you give anyone new to our sector of the foodservice industry?
Ask a lot of questions! Take advantage of learning opportunities and materials when they are provided. Equipment is everchanging and new technology is being incorporated. By nature, we resist change- having the knowledge to help your customer make an informed decision when updating equipment can really benefit your client base. Being able to speak about alternate equipment options can make the difference in a one-time customer or having an ongoing relationship where the customer truly trusts and values your suggestions.
Do you have any recommendations for our customers as they navigate this semi-uncertain time within the industry?
Make a plan early in your budget for equipment. With delays in the delivery of products from the manufacturer, the key to getting your equipment when it’s needed is planning. Get your equipment quoted early and use folks like me as your eyes and ears as to what’s happening in the industry. We’re the best resource when it comes to ensuring that the equipment that you’re looking at is being produced by the manufacturer and what those timelines look like.
What do you do for fun outside of work?
Outside of my work, my husband and I run a catering business based out of Princeton. Making beautiful food and cakes is a passion for us both! We enjoy traveling, finding new food spots, lake weekends with the family, and hiking trails in Fayetteville with our dog, Clementine.
I have a friend coming to visit who has never been to the Appalachian mountains before. What foods do you think best represent our culture?
Oh goodness, we have so many wonderful flavors and flair here! I am a ramp girl in the early Spring. I’ll always find a way to work it into whatever I’m cooking, right down to the compote butter. That intense garlic/onion flavor is one of my favorites. You can find pickled eggs in my fridge regardless of the time of year, the more purple they are, the better!
Here specifically in West Virginia, we are known for our pepperoni rolls- that’s a must have. I am a little bias when it comes to my hot dogs, specifically a slaw dog from the southern part of the state!
Lastly, I think you’d have to try a poke sallet with some bacon drippings and salt. It’s an acquired taste and most compared to turnip greens or spinach.
It was an exciting morning waiting for those numbers to be published! I was thrilled to be part of something that was measured on that large of a scale. I still find it amazing that I’m able to be part of this powerhouse and still work in my home state.
When you think of the future of our company or the foodservice industry as a whole, what do you see for us?
This is only the beginning, the room for growth is limitless! I believe that if you work hard and take care of your customers like family- that word of mouth will lead you down a successful path.
We appreciate Ashley taking the time to answer our questions, especially her response about food. There's nowhere in the world where you can get a hot dog as good as ours.